Cadets participated in two global travel programs in May: an Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars trip to Panama and the Corps of Cadets Global Scholars Program trip to France.

The George and Carol Olmsted Foundation, based in Falls Church, Virginia, has long supported educational programs that give active-duty military officers and more recently cadets and midshipmen at Title X senior military colleges a better understanding of foreign cultures.

The trip to Panama included cadets from Virginia Tech and Norfolk State University. Students tour Panama City and Colon, visit the Panama Canal, experience native communities, conduct service projects, and meet with the U.S. ambassador to Panama, among other events.

The Corps’ Global Scholars Program, now in its second year, includes a three-credit hour seminar focused on the the Allied invasion of Normandy during World War II followed by a week-long trip to France.

In the classroom, cadets take turns leading the class, sharing their research and applying the history lessons to today’s world events. In France, they led similar discussions on leadership and decision-making while standing at the very spots they’ve studied.

France

Cadets visited Omaha Beach during the early morning hours and had the battlefield to themselves.

2017 Global Scholars Program
Cadets visited Omaha Beach during the early morning hours and had the battlefield to themselves.

Cadet Jacob Payne led the discussion at Pegasus Bridge, significant as a strategic objective of the British 6th Airborne Division on June 6, 1944. Seizing this and other bridges north of Caen would prevent German armor and infantry units from counter-attacking the amphibious assault force landing on the eastern invasion beaches later that morning.

2017 Global Scholars Program
Cadet Jacob Payne led the discussion at Pegasus Bridge, significant as a strategic objective of the British 6th Airborne Division on June 6, 1944. Seizing this and other bridges north of Caen would prevent German armor and infantry units from counter-attacking the amphibious assault force landing on the eastern invasion beaches later that morning.

The group at Omaha Beach, one of the two American landing areas in Normandy.

2017 Global Scholars Program
The group at Omaha Beach, one of the two American landing areas in Normandy.

Cadets took in the sites at Mont Saint Michel, France, including the Mont Saint Michel Abbey, built in the 10th century. 

2017 Global Scholars Program
Cadets took in the sites at Mont Saint Michel, France, including the Mont Saint Michel Abbey, built in the 10th century. 

Panama

The 2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars visited the Panama Canal. They are, from left, Preston Jones, William Glynn, Sydney Thorpe, Kathryn Dyer, Autumn Moore (Norfolk State), Quinton Armacost, Anthony Winston (Norfolk State), and James Earl. In the background is a cargo ship transiting through the locks toward the Pacific Ocean.

2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars
The 2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars visited the Panama Canal. They are, from left, Preston Jones, William Glynn, Sydney Thorpe, Kathryn Dyer, Autumn Moore (Norfolk State), Quinton Armacost, Anthony Winston (Norfolk State), and James Earl. In the background is a cargo ship transiting through the locks toward the Pacific Ocean.

Cadets participated in a service project at MUCEC, a facility that supports battered women, along with a school for disadvantaged children. The group poses with two of the facility’s overseers, Sister Barbara on the left and Sister Dina on the right.

2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars
Cadets participated in a service project at MUCEC, a facility that supports battered women, along with a school for disadvantaged children. The group poses with two of the facility’s overseers, Sister Barbara on the left and Sister Dina on the right.

Cadets joined U.S. Ambassador to Panama John D. Feeley, at center, at the Memorial Day ceremony at Corozal American Cemetery in the former Canal Zone.

2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars
Cadets joined U.S. Ambassador to Panama John D. Feeley, at center, at the Memorial Day ceremony at Corozal American Cemetery in the former Canal Zone.

After stormy weather canceled a planned visit to the indigenous Emara Indians in Panama, cadets went fishing on the Panama Canal.

2017 Undergraduate Olmsted Scholars
After stormy weather canceled a planned visit to the indigenous Emara Indians in Panama, cadets went fishing on the Panama Canal.